Getting ready for Christmas……

Christmas was always a special time at St Luke’s.  For the patients, being in hospital over Christmas was very hard and so the staff did everything they could to make a cheerful atmosphere on the wards and behind the scenes.

Senior management and doctors served the staff Christmas dinner and would join the nurses who visited the wards singing carols and wearing their capes inside out to show the red lining. Wards were decorated with a new theme each year, usually set by Matron. The children’s ward made sure that there was a tea party and games to play.

The Mayor and Mayoress of Guildford would pay a visit, with the maternity ward being a very popular place for the all important Surrey Advertiser photograph welcoming the first baby born on Christmas Day.

Take a look at our archive selection of festive wards from 1958 to 1974:

1. Henrique’s Ward in 1959

2. Sells Ward on Christmas Day 1958

3. Sister ‘Robbie’ Robinson with children on Harper Ward, Christmas 1974

4. A Christmas party for ex patients on the children’s ward

Henriques Ward Christmas 1958 Sells Ward on Christmas Day Christmas Party Harper Ward 1974 or 6 (Sr Robinson)  \

Sister Brown and expatients

The scores on the doors……….

The cell doors at the Spike tell a story all of their own: scored with century old graffiti and bearing the marks of time.  Sadly, there were very few peep-holes left in tact and the bolts and locks had long been stripped away.

Luckily for the Spike, Len Norman has been able to find some of the original bolts and made new peep hole covers so that visitors can now see what the original doors would have looked like.

Len came in today and after some discussion with Gordon McBrearty one of our leading guides, fixed the new bolts.  Thanks Len – as usual you have come up trumps!

Len (right) fixing the bolts and new peephole cover with help from Gordon.
Len (right) fixing the bolts and new peephole cover with help from Gordon.